A tip on Saturday lead to the arrest of 14 men in an alleged rooster fighting operation in Haines City, and deputies found fighting paraphernalia and hundreds of birds.
About 4:30 p.m., Polk County Sheriff’s Office deputies got an anonymous tip about possible rooster fights at 4560 Carl Boozer Road in Haines City. Deputies found a fight in progress and the suspects at the scene. One of the suspects, Noel Garcia Rivera, had $680 in cash, and a large amount of fighting paraphernalia was located inside his vehicle, according to the sheriff’s office.
Deputies from the Agriculture Crimes unit got a search warrant and checked the property.
Two firearms along with rooster fighting paraphernalia were located in three vehicles, the sheriff’s office said. In the barn, deputies found two roosters tied in sacks waiting to be weighed for a fight. Also found was a rooster bath, discarded spur packaging, a sparring dummy, mole skin wrapping, syringes, and a variety medicines.
There were about 200 roosters, hens, and chicks in cages within the barn area, the sheriff’s office said.
The suspects arrested were:
* Noel Garcia Rivera, 40, 239 Magellan Drive, Kissimmee.
* Mario Antonio Guzman, 41, 634 Polynesian Court, Kissimmee.
* Gerardo J. Ramos-Pamales, 33, 4503 Ross Lanier Lane, Kissimmee
* Manuel Figueroa, 78, 4560 Carl Boozer Road, Haines City.
* Jaime Criado-Colon, 48, 3309 Baker Road, Haines City.
* Manuel Emil Contreras-Lorenzo, 32, 721 Euclid Ave., Lake Wales.
* Rhadames Mora-Burgos, 35, 1026 Bice Grove Road, Haines City.
* Jose Antonio Ocasio-Ocasio, 57, 906 Cumberland Drive, Kissimmee.
* Arnold Rodriguez, 58, 342 Mystery House Road, Davenport (registered sex offender).
* Jesus Santana-Ramirez, 78, 707 Fore Lane, Kissimmee.
* Mitchel Santana, 46, 707 Fore Lane, Kissimmee.
* Nelson A. Cordero-Nunez, 54, 3237 Fairhaven Ave., Kissimmee.
Joaquin Noel Abdon-Fernandez, 38, 8545 Wichita Place, Orlando.
* Juan Almanzar, 47, 627 Baldwin Circle, Kissimmee.
Each of the suspects was charged with fighting and baiting animals, and possession of fighting paraphernalia. All were booked into the Polk County Jail on Saturday except Arnold Rodriguez, who complained of chest pains and was taken to a local hospital, the sheriff’s office said.